Postdoc Hiring Guide
A Postdoctoral Fellow (postdoc) is an individual with a doctoral or other terminal degree who is engaged in mentored research and/or scholarly training to develop their professional skills. Most postdoc positions are two to three years, with a maximum of five years.
A formal recruitment process is optional for postdoc positions. The hiring unit may decide whether to identify a candidate informally or hold a search to identify a qualified pool of applicants.
Recruitment, interview methods and the hiring decision are at the discretion of the hiring manager or supervisor. A search committee is not required. It is recommended that the hiring unit collect a candidate's resume or CV. Other screening forms and interview questions are optional, but if used, they must be work-related.
The hiring unit will need to request a background check, file a staff action in PeopleAdmin and initiate an EPAF for the successful candidate. Faculty supervisors should work with their unit's hiring staff to complete this process. More detailed steps are outlined below.
The Provost's Office provides postdoc salary guidelines (click on the current FY to expand). Human Resources does not provide market rate information for postdoc positions.
The hiring unit determines the need for the postdoc position, defines the scope of work and secures funding.
If the position is not externally funded (through grants, contracts, gifts, etc.), a hiring freeze request must be submitted and approved. It is recommended that this be done before submitting the PeopleAdmin action or contingently offering the position to any identified candidate.
In order to correctly set up the postdoc position in Banner, a staff action is required in PeopleAdmin. Review the PeopleAdmin workflow
- Create a new postdoc position or modify an existing/vacant position.
- Please provide the CIP (Classification of Instructional Program) code for the position in the comments field of the Position Control section of the action.
- If applicable, attach the identified candidate's CV in the Position Documents section of the action. This will assist in seating the candidate in the position description. A search waiver is not necessary.
- Send all postdoc actions to Jennifer Radil as an approver from the Unit/College Review stop after Class/Comp Review. Actions will be returned to Unit/College Review to be moved to PCN Review and Post.
After the action has been approved, HR will create a job posting to either:
- Source candidates through an open and competitive search, in which case the posting will be made public, OR
- Allow an identified postdoc candidate to provide demographic information, if they are not a current U of I employee. In this case, the posting will be provided to the hiring unit as an internal/invite-only link to send to the identified candidate.
Please refer to the postdoc salary guidelines on the Provost's Office website (click on the current FY to expand) for information on acceptable salary practices pertaining to the FLSA minimum and market rate compensation.
Note that if a candidate has been identified through an informal process, a contingent offer can be made before the staff action in PeopleAdmin.
Request a background check on the HR website at any time.
Note that if a candidate has been identified through an informal process, the hiring unit can request a background check before or concurrently with the staff action in PeopleAdmin.
After the candidate accepts a contingent offer, the hiring unit completes a salary agreement and sends it to firstname.lastname@example.org for review and signature by the Provost's Office.
The EPAF for the postdoc candidate can be done any time after satisfactory background check results have been confirmed and the required onboarding paperwork has been completed with Human Resources.